Snowden denies being source of The Independent's "NSA leak" story exposing UK base

The UK's Independent newspaper published its first exclusive story on the NSA leaks, claiming that it is based upon "documents obtained from the NSA by Edward Snowden." The story exposes the existence of a "secret" UK base in the Middle East.

But there's a problem: Edward Snowden says he's never talked the The Independent, and that this leak didn't come from him. Through The Guardian's Glenn Greenwald, he suggests that the British government is now pro-actively leaking classified information it believes is in his stash.

I have never spoken with, worked with, or provided any journalistic materials to the Independent. The journalists I have worked with have, at my request, been judicious and careful in ensuring that the only things disclosed are what the public should know but that does not place any person in danger. People at all levels of society up to and including the President of the United States have recognized the contribution of these careful disclosures to a necessary public debate, and we are proud of this record.

"It appears that the UK government is now seeking to create an appearance that the Guardian and Washington Post's disclosures are harmful, and they are doing so by intentionally leaking harmful information to The Independent and attributing it to others. The UK government should explain the reasoning behind this decision to disclose information that, were it released by a private citizen, they would argue is a criminal act."

The Independent's Oliver Wright asserts that it "was not leaked or 'duped,'" but offers no sourcing information for the story beyond what it has already claimed.

Greenwald: "Leaving aside the fact that the Independent article quotes an anonymous "senior Whitehall source", nobody said they were "duped" into publishing anything. The question is: who provided them this document or the information in it? It clearly did not come from Snowden or any of the journalists with whom he has directly worked."